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Category Archives: ramblings

1. Late night chats
2. Hangs with great mates
3. Fast internet
4. Old people still in love
5. Laughing so much it hurts
6. Listening to Family Force 5
7. Watching the sun set
8. Brekky on the Beach
9. Aussie Day BBQ
10. Dancing at live gigs
11. Discovering new fav bands
12. Making people smile
13. Making people laugh
14. Encouraging people
15. Getting to church early
16. Seeing people grow
17. New friends
18. Old friends
19. Prawns on the BBQ on Boxing day
20. Waking up and realizing there are still a few hours left to sleep
21. Swings
22. Inside jokes
23. Warm spring days
24. Schoolies week
25. Hillsong conference
26. Birthday dinners
27. Nanna’s special marshmallow- topped birthday cake
28. Winning
29. Annoying my sisters
30. Introducing someone to new music
31. New songs from my fav bands
32. walking at night at kangaroo point with friends
33. Travel
34. Photos
35. Re-watching fav movies
36. Heartsupport.com
37. Sunshine after rain
38. Church family
39. Fast cars
40. Discussing future adventures
41. Good hangs
42. Babies
43. Learning new things
44. Stuffchristianslike.net
45. Love
46. Sun showers
47. Life
48. Not losing
49. Christmas morning
50. Sitting in silence with best friend
51. Inspirational people
52. Beach at sunset
53. Long walks
54. Exciting travel with friends and family
55. Offending christians with Jesus
56. Peace
57. Sleep ins
58. Staying up late
59. Handing assignments in
60. Being in an empty church building

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… no not the softdrink… not the type that gets you from the carpark level to the shopping level of the department store… and definitely not the song by Shannon Noll…

I’m talking about the type of lift we all need from time to time.

Donna was talking about being lifted up at church the other night. For her, it was a maths teacher who had faith that she was smart enough to pass and sowed time and encouragement into her, for Mia, it was the man from the Salvo’s who came each Sunday to pick her and her sisters up for church.

It reminded me of the importance of others.
It reminded me that we cannot do this alone.
It reminded me of the heart of Jesus, loving others. When Jesus walked the earth, He didn’t seem to assume what people needed (afterall to assume makes an ASS of U and ME ;)). In Mark 10:58, Jesus is met with a blind man. The man was calling out to Him and He and His disciples and a crowd were walking by. Jesus stopped and called Him over, and asked the blind man, “What do you want me to do for you?” To this the blind man replied, “Rabbi, I want to see.”

I love that Jesus asked the man, rather than simply sweeping in and fixing his problems. I think that sometimes we, chrstians, think we have all the answers. Sure, we do have Jesus, and He is the answer but does this give us the monopoly on knowing what is best for people and what they need.

LIFT:

  • to move or bring (something) upward from the ground or other support to a higher position
  • to raise or direct upward
  • to hold up or display on high
  • an act or instance of helping to climb or mount

Follow You – Leeland

You live among the least of these
The weary and the weak
And it would be a tragedy
For me to turn away
All my needs You have supplied
When I was dead You gave me life
So how could I not give it away so freely?

And I´ll…
Follow You into the homes of the broken
Follow You into the world
Meet the needs for the poor and the needy God
Follow You into the world

Use my hands use my feet
To make Your kingdom come
To the corners of the earth
Until Your work is done
Faith without works is dead
On the cross Your blood was shed
So how could we not give it away so freely?

And I give all myself
I give all myself
I give all myself to You

Give Me Your Eyes – Brandon Heath
Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see
yeah…yeah…yeah…yeah

Step out on a busy street
See a girl and our eyes meet
Does her best to smile at me
To hide what’s underneath
There’s a man just to her right
Black suit and a bright red tie
Too ashamed to tell his wife
He’s out of work, he’s buying time
All those people going somewhere
Why have I never cared

We often sing the words “In my life, be lifted high, In my world, be lifted high. In our love, be lifted high.”
What do these words actually mean? How do we practically/ literally lift God high?

    Matthew 25:35-36

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

THOUGHTS

When have you needed lifting?
Who lifted you?
If no one lifted you, what ditch would you be in?
Are you lifting others?
How should we lift others?
How has Jesus lifted you?
Do we Lift Jesus?
Is that what worship is about?

Church is a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately. I have been struggling to work out what role church plays and what it should be.

Friday night, I was reminded of what one very important (actually the most important) part is. God. I know it sounds like the obvious Christianese answer, but how often do we get caught up in programing, image, rules, procedures and hierarchy that we forget the most important aspect. God.

Church has played a massive part in my life. Some good, some bad and some I’d really rather forget.

Church seems to have a bad connotation these days, often blamed for being hypocritical, having poor priorities, having the wrong agenda and a number of other things.

Some say that the church is out dated, just after your money and that religion is a crutch for those who can’t handle life.

So what is church?

Is it some nice building, with stained-glass windows, wooden pews and a dude with a weird dress?
Is it a place where suburban folk go, all dressed up to impress, on a Sunday?
Is it a group of people to appear to have a great life, everything seems to go well for them, they live in nice houses, drive nice cars and have well-behaved children?
Is it all those weird people that you avoided during high school, gathered together to make a sub-nerd-culture that is so far removed from reality they need to invent their own version of stuff… like christian-myspace, christian-guitar hero , tackpants and even mints.

I think it’s more about community, others and love. It’s about loving God, people and life. It’s about being the answer people need.

Here is how Ps Brain sees the church.

“The Church that I See”
By Brain Houston

‘The Church that I see is a Church of influence. A church so large in size that the city and nation cannot ignore it. A church growing in size so quickly that buildings struggle to contain the increase.

I see a Church whose heartfelt praise and worship touches heaven and changes earth. Worship which influences the praises of people throughout the earth, exalting Christ with powerful songs of faith and hope.

I see a Church whose altars are constantly filled with repentant sinners responding to Christ’s call to salvation.

Yes, the Church that I see is so dependent on the Holy Spirit that nothing will stop it nor stand against it.

A Church whose people are unified, praying and full of God’s Spirit.

A Church that I see has a message so clear that lives are changed forever and potential is fulfilled through the power of His Word. A message beamed to the peoples of the earth through their television screens.

I see a Church so compassionate that people are drawn from impossible situations into a loving and friendly circle of hope, where answers are found and acceptance is given.

I see a people so Kingdom minded that they will count whatever the cost and pay whatever the price to see revival sweep this land.

The Church that I see is a Church so committed to raising, training and empowering a leadership generation to reap the end-time harvest that all its ministries are consumed with this goal.

The Church that I see is a Church whose head is Jesus, whose help is the Holy Spirit and whose focus is the Great Commission.

Yes, the Church that I see could well be our church – Hillsong Church.’

I think that it is very easy to be a spectator… to sit back.. attend church and form our own opinions and ideas about how the church should be. From the sidelines it’s all too easy to point out what needs to be done and what doesn’t seem to be getting done right… it’s easy to judge and be critical…

But it shouldn’t be like that… church isn’t about a few pastors providing a nice building and warm fuzzy sermons to make you feel good about Jesus… As Ps Brain said it’s about kingdom-minded people counting the cost and paying whatever necessary to see revival.

It’s about you and me… we are the church… so what are we making it?

I ‘ve been at Easterfest all weekend… Easterfest is a music festival in the smallish town of toowoomba… (be warned… there are Woombas everywhere! Their goal is to infect you with Woombaitus… which causes you to become one of them)

There are many things I love about Easterfest (formally known as AGMF), some of these include:
1. Friends and Family – I love spending a long weekend with the people I love.. having lots of fun and random times…
2. Fav Bands – I love going and seeing the bands i love.. some of the highlights of the past few years are, superchic[k], Rookie, Compliments of Gus, Newsboys, the lads (yea lame I know), Day of fire, TFK and Hillsong United.
3. Finding new fav bands – New Empire, planet of the sterios, ellington, newworldson, scat, bradley hathaway (well he is more of a poet) and David Baker
4. Those totally random bands that I know (and sometimes hope) I’ll never hear again – the band that went from old school traditional church type music playing “Our God is an Awesome God” to screamo… in the same song..
5. Roadtrip – sure it’s only 1.5 hours away… but who doesn’t love a short roadtrip, long enough for sing-a-longs but short enough to not be too boring…
6. Good Times – Not getting killed by homocidal Woombas.. seeing bands play in the shopping centre, meeting bands after their show, running into people I haven’t seen in ages, walking into a tent and hearing a band that makes me laugh, being up the front of the mosh pit and pretending to be a fan of the band playing – ‘singing’ and getting into the music – when really we’re just waiting for the next band, actually singing and dancing to new empire in the cafe, the band seeing us dancing and thanking us after, people coming up to us the following day commenting on our awesome dancing efforts, Evelyn and Rachel being embarrased by my and Nikki’s dancing skills and running away pretending not to know us…

 

So in short… Easterfest = Good.

Tho there were some things I found weird or annoying…
1. Mudfest.. I really didn’t mind the rain… but trying to navigate my way around on Sunday through the mud was very annoying..
2. Pro-life msg.. I understand they’re probably thinking that selling shirts that say smart comments about abortion being wrong, other shirts with ultrasound pics, giving the oppurtunity to sponser an unborn child (yea, I found that weird) and having Bec St James sing an anti abortion song with a film clip will help get the msg out there that abortion is very wrong… But what msg does it send those who have already had an abortion? What alternative does it give? Does it really have a greater affect than guilt and regret? I don’t know.
3. Bec St James… She had an hour time slot, prime time on the Main Stage… AGAIN! she sang the same songs she has done for the last 3 years.. and half of them weren’t even her songs (thanks Micheal W Smith)… Why not give a local band a chance? New Empire, Ellington, Planet of the Sterios?
4. Woombas… The people of Toowoomba (or Woombas).. I nearly got hit by a car (or homocidal Woomba) a number of times.. was I crossing the road?… no.. I was standing next to my parked car..
5. Seeing Jimmy vs Camerman… ouch!

Check out this Vid.. I’ll chuck another one up when I’m done uploading it… and some pics too..

Ellington

My life as a 22 year old is drawing to an end. I will soon be 23.

The thought of 23 is kinda scary. When I was younger, around 16, I thought that people who were 23 were old. I was sure that they had it all together. They had graduated uni, they knew what they wanted out of life and how to get there. They surely weren’t still living at home, studying, working casually, single and still wondering what the future holds. But this is where I have found myself. Does this mean I am disappointed with my 22 years? No, not at all, in fact, looking back over the last 22 years has made me kinda proud and excited to be where I am today and where I am headed in the future.

Sometimes, I think it helps me to look into my past… I find that it explains a lot about the way I think, feel and act about certain things.

I didn’t just turn out this way by accident though. Lots of people have had input into my life. Some good,others not so good.

I have wrestled with the idea of naming some of those that have impacted my life… I know I will forget some people… but that is a risk I will have to take. The following people (or groups of people) have changed my life… (in no particular order).

hafner
Matt the builder
Mr Simmons
Meyling
Rachel
JT
Dan
United
last year’s interns
Kmart Management (Tom, Doug and John)
Jan and the kids that lived across the road
Asten, Monty, Elida
family
gush.com.au
Jason
Reggie
Maija
Evelyn
Parents
Bible College lecturers
random customers
Deanne
old church
my lifegroup (past and present)
andy
amanda
dan b
chris
jade
bons
tab
emma
kelly
zac
jojo
xxxchurch
Ben
Jack
Paul
cody
mrs vegas
mladen
kate
matty o
jess
bec
nikki
nanna
UK tour 07
judah

Some of those people have no idea who I am… maybe they walked in and out of my life without stopping but something they said or did made me stop, think and change.

One example is when I was only 15, I was still new at my kmart job and it was my first busy Saturday. There was a line up of customers all around the paint counter, waiting for paint to be tinted, keys to be cut or just an answer to a general question. A group of us workers were squashed in behind the counter serving as fast as possible. An old lady came behind the counter, pushing in front of all the others who had been impatiently waiting. One of the more senior casuals told me to help her. She was looking for batteries, annoyed, I pointed her in the direction. She looked confused and asked me to show her where they were. So, although i didn’t want to, I took her to the battery section. When we got there she pulled an old torch from her handbag.
“What batteries do I need?” She asked. I grabbed the torch, opened it and pulled the old batteries out. I grabbed the correct ones off the shelf and handed them to her. She started crying. I froze. Surely I wasn’t rude enough to make her cry! She proceeded to explain that it was her husband, of over 50 years, who usually did this kind of thing, shopping for batteries. He died the previous week, leaving her all alone. Sure her kids visited but they soon went home, back to their normal lives. Her life would never be normal.

That old lady probably doesn’t realize, but that day I learned a lesson. A valuable one.

I think I will have to do a separate post about the people who have influenced my life because if I write about each of those listed above this post will be epicly long.

I think one of the most rewarding parts of getting older or “growing up”, is the people you find “growing up” along side of you. Those who, over time, you have come to know and love. That is what life is about… those around us.

Take a moment and think about those who have influenced you, maybe it’s someone you are close to, maybe this person doesn’t know you exist. Who are they? What is it that they have said or done that has changed or challenged you in some way?

I never really understood what “christian music” was/is. I don’t really get why there is such a divide between christian stuff and secular… books, movies, clothing even video games are labeled. Why do we feel the need to put everything into a little box with nice neat label…? It reminds me of all the mothers who buy those label making machines and go crazy labeling jars in the pantry, school books, boxes, food in the fridge, crates in the cupboard.. in order to organise everything.. I guess it stops them from losing stuff… or finding things in the wrong places so they always know exactly what to expect.

What makes music christian?

Is it music that is about God?

Do all the band members have to be christian?

Do any of the band members have to be christian?

What if the band members are christian but the song is about something other than God?

What if the band releases their album on the ‘mainstream’ market?

What if the band members are christian but they don’t openly announce to the world their current spiritual state?

Do christians have to like christian music?

Does listening to secular music make a person less a christian?

For a song to be about God/Jesus does the song need to use the words God or Jesus?

Jesus died on the cross to save people, not bands, not music… people, right?

It’s funny how we (Christians) can so easily point the finger and say “look at what he did!” and “How could anyone do that?” and “What was he thinking?!” and judge (subtlety of course)… but I was thinking about it on Saturday, (work was fairly quiet and I was in a deep thinking mood)… I was also thinking about other issues that Christians so quickly point the finger and “judge” on, such as abortion, porn, self harm, homosexuality, depression, substance abuse and crime…

We (Christians) seem to have the monopoly on what is ‘right’ and anything else is wrong. So often we seem to express our opinions by telling an expecting girl that abortion is murder, by telling a pornstar that what she is doing is wrong and disgraceful, by telling a young girl that sleeping around is dirty and desperate and the Bible says “No” and the consequences are eternity in hell. But who are we to come into their lives at that point? where were we (the church) when the young girl was looking for love in the wrong places? Did we show her that Jesus’ love is pure and more powerful and fulfilling than any boy she could hook in with? or were we too busy telling her the Bible says “NO” to sex b4 marriage?
Where were we (the church) when the young boy was looking for acceptance and started doing drugs? Were we there to show him that God accepts him no matter what the boy’s father may think or say to him? Were we there when he got beat up at school?
Where were we when a father looking for help with getting his life together, as his wife left him? Where were we when nothing he did seemed good enough? Where were we when he lost it and did an extreme act, which he will never forget as long as he lives, neither will his other kids, or his ex-wife? I hope rather than simply pointing a finger and saying “the bible says ‘thou shall NOT KILL’ How could you!?!” We are praying, praying for him, for his other kids, for his ex-wife, for his other family, for all parents who sometimes struggle and don’t know this awesome God that we have to help us out in tough times…

I guess the point I’m attempting to make is that we need to be there for people always, not just when things go really against what we would do… or when we get offended. We need to show people that Christ isn’t about a bunch of rules but rather love.

So, It’s Christmas night… all is well… I’ve eaten a lot of great food… opened mostly good presents, and shared fun and laughs with my family…
But what about these boys?
I don’t think they woke up bright and early to see that santa had left them a pile of presents under a plastic, decorated tree… They didn’t spend too much money on useless novelty gifts, or on the Wii game you just had to have, or the latest gadget that you got to keep up with the guys at work (even though you still haven’t found a use for the last one you “just had to have”).
Let’s give to someone who you’ll never meet… but desperately needs you…

Grace – it’s not just a quick prayer you gotta say before you can eat…

It’s God running at you with His arms wide open… even though there is nothing you can do to deserve Him….

Luke 15

20So he got up and went to his father. “But
while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with
compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
21″The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and
against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22″But the
father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put
a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23Bring the fattened calf and kill
it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24For this son of mine was dead and is
alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

So why do we dodge God? Why do we continually turn away?

After having a true revelation that grace is God running towards you, you can no longer see grace as the green light to sin and be forgiven… it’s so much more than that….

when a door opens
does that mean we should
walk through?